Indianapolis – Youngsters Chellsie Memmel and Carly Patterson demonstrated the depth of the U.S. program on Saturday by finishing 1-2 in the USA Gymnastics Pacific Challenge at Titan Gym on the campus of Cal. State – Fullerton.

Memmel, 14, of West Allis, Wis. (SALTO), earned a final all-around score of 37.725 including a 9.750 on her speciality, the uneven bars. However, because Memmel competed as exhibition on the vault and floor, the all-around title officially went to 15-year-old Carly Patterson of Allen, Texas (WOGA). Patterson, the 2003 Visa American Cup champion, proved consistent on all four events to finish with a final mark of 37.675.
Both athletes, who became eligible to compete at the senior level in 2003, hope to represent the United States at the 2003 World Championships, Aug. 16-24 in Anaheim, Calif.

“I felt confident today in my ability to relax and concentrate on performing my best,” Memmel said. “But I was still focused on performing well and earning my place among the National Team members competing here.”

Memmel finished second at the American Classic a week ago in Burlington, Mass., including gold medals on two events.

Annia Hatch of the United States, who also competed exhibition on bars and beam, finished third at 37.625, followed by bars world champion Courtney Kupets at 37.500 and beam world champion Ashley Postell at 37.450.

In the final team standings, USA Red took first with a team mark of 151.700. Competing for the Red team were Memmel, Patterson, Hatch, Postell, Kupets, and Tabitha Yim. USA Blue took second at 147.500 behind the efforts of Nicole Harris – the meet’s high scorer on beam, Terin Humphrey, Tia Orlando, Nina Kim, Katie Heenan, Marcia Newby and Sarah Shire. Canada finished third with a final team mark of 142.375 followed by Australia at 142.200.

“I’ve had really good training this season, and I felt I was as prepared as I could be for this meet,” Patterson said. “I hope to continue to compete well this year and maybe I’ll be back out here (in California) in August.”

The Pacific Challenge showcased the USA’s medal hopefuls and Commonwealth challengers from Canada and Australia as they prepare for the upcoming 2003 World Gymnastics Championships, Aug. 16-24 in Anaheim.

The Pacific Challenge featured two U.S. teams from the combined Senior and Junior National Teams.